Advertisement

Fast and Furious: Woods, Karle pace Kittens in win over Lions

Jan. 19—ASHLAND — Anderson Gym does not have any visible speed limit signs.

It seems fitting because Kenleigh Woods isn't slowing down any time soon.

The junior's point total increased at a blistering pace in the second half as Ashland ran away with an 85-47 win over district rival Boyd County on Thursday night.

"(Ashland coach) Stacy (Davis) really likes us to push the ball," Woods said. "I think it really contributes to our team. It speeds us up. It helps our offense, and it leads to defense."

Woods finished the game with 38 points. She hit 16 of her 22 shot attempts and was 6 for 6 at the free throw line. She ended the third quarter with a personal eight-point blitz and hit her last eight shots from the field. The majority of her baskets came in the lane in transition.

"Kenleigh is really good," Boyd County coach Pete Fraley said. "I said let's make her beat us from outside. We let her get in the paint time and time again. The good thing is it's not the end of the year. It's not a lose-and-go-home game. We will go back and evaluate and get a game plan ready for the next time we see them."

Davis said the Kittens' game plan was ball pressure. Both teams extend their defense from baseline to baseline, but Ashland relentlessly beat their opponent down the floor for easy buckets.

"It's our game to get out on you defensively," Davis said, "and get up and down the floor. I thought we did a great job with that. We told them the key to this game was ball pressure. We needed it from every single one of them. It was the best all-around defensive performance that we have had since I've been here."

The Kittens were getting contributions from different positions on the floor. Gabby Karle was active on both ends, scoring double figures with 12 points and grabbing key rebounds.

The coach sees her confidence growing with each game.

"We have told her to believe in herself," Davis said. "She can get down on herself. You have to get past it if you make a mistake or miss a shot. Our biggest thing with her is ball pressure. All of us believe in her. She has come 180 degrees from last year with her all-around game."

"We've all played together for a while," Woods added. "Gabby has really fit in with the team. Our team has great chemistry. We are all sisters. We are family."

Boyd County (14-5) closed the gap to 53-43 with 1:36 remaining in the third quarter. Ninety seconds later, Woods and company doubled their advantage.

Woods scored 10 straight points, a streak that carried into the fourth quarter. Ella Sellars and Brookelyn Duckwyler each tallied a pair of buckets in the final frame. Woods finished with a flourish as Ashland outscored the Lions, 22-4, in the fourth quarter.

Sellars dropped in 11 points. Aryanna Gulley and Jenna Delaney each supplied eight points.

"It's what we have been working on when we beefed up our schedule," said Davis, who received a water-cooler shower in the locker room after the victory. "We prayed all day that we could play with the snow. We had two good days of practice. We did some team stuff, and the girls were ready to go."

Ashland (10-4) pounced on early opportunities to run and opened a 24-12 lead in the first quarter after a reverse layup from Karle and a triple from Delaney.

The Lions fought back with Jasmine Jordan leading the charge. She recorded 24 of Boyd County's 32 first-half points to keep the deficit within striking distance.

Jordan ended the contest with a double-double. She scored 29 points and grabbed 13 rebounds. Jada Ray chipped in seven points. Ray had to take over the point guard duties after Taylor Bartrum left the game in the third quarter with an injury.

Fraley was curious to see how his team would respond after three games in Owensboro last weekend where Boyd County won the Kentucky 2A state championship.

"We knew what we were up against," Fraley said. "We didn't execute any part of our game plan. Ashland played really well. Hats off to them."

Ashland also spent several games away from home during December and is ready to turn that experience into more wins down the stretch.

"I feel like the teams that we have been playing have really helped us," Woods said. "Boyd County has always been a big rivalry and those games helped us tonight."

The Kittens secure their spot in the upcoming 16th Region Tournament with the win. Ashland will be the No. 1 seed in the 64th District Tournament.

BOYD CO. FG FT REB TP

J. Ray 3-7 0-0 1 7

Bartrum 1-3 0-0 1 2

Opell 1-2 0-0 2 2

Jordan 12-22 4-11 13 29

Biggs 1-12 4-4 3 6

Stevens 0-3 0-0 2 0

Moore 0-2 1-2 0 1

Hamilton 0-0 0-0 0 0

A. Ray 0-1 0-0 1 0

Culp 0-0 0-0 0 0

Team 3

TOTAL 18-52 9-17 26 47

FG Pct: 34.6. FT Pct: 52.9. 3-point FGs: 1-8 (J. Ray 1-3, Opell 0-1, Biggs 0-2, Stevens 0-1, Moore 0-1) PF: 17. Fouled out: Opell. Turnovers: 18.

ASHLAND FG FT REB TP

Woods 16-22 6-6 4 38

Karle 5-11 0-0 5 12

J. Gulley 1-6 0-0 4 2

Sellars 4-7 1-2 2 11

A. Gulley 4-8 0-0 4 8

Troxler 0-0 0-0 1 0

Duckwyler 3-9 0-0 5 6

Thomas 0-0 0-0 0 0

Delaney 2-4 3-4 7 8

Rogers 0-1 0-0 2 0

Bolen 0-0 0-0 0 0

Smith 0-0 0-0 0 0

Wolfe 0-0 0-0 0 0

Scites 0-0 0-0 0 0

Team 8

TOTAL 35-67 10-12 42 85

FG Pct: 52.2. FT Pct: 83.3. 3-point FGs: 5-15 (Woods 0-1, Karle 2-4, J. Gulley 0-1, Sellars 2-3, A. Gulley 0-1, Duckwyler 0-2, Delaney 1-3) PF: 16. Fouled out: None. Turnovers: 14.

BOYD CO. 14 18 11 4 — 47

ASHLAND 29 14 20 22 — 85

Officials: Dave Anderson, Paige Hurst, Roy Wright

(606) 326-2671

msparks@dailyindependent.com